Sausage, Cider & Potato Pie
Tristan first came across this pie at a Women’s Institute fête. It’s a real man’s pie, he was told — but women will love it too!
|500g||new potatoes, cut into slices 6-8mm thick|
|1||dessert apple, peeled, cored and cut into chunks|
|100ml||good-quality cider, preferably Orchard Pig|
|1 tbsp||wholegrain mustard|
|500g||good-quality herby sausages|
|1||quantity of suet pastry (see ingredients below)|
|A handful||of grated Cheddar cheese (optional)|
|1||free-range egg, lightly beaten, to glaze|
|Sea salt and black pepper|
|A little||chopped thyme and/or sage, to decorate|
|For the suet pastry:|
|1 pinch||of salt|
|120 - 150ml||milk|
You will need a pie tin.
First make the pastry. Put the flour and salt into a bowl and stir in the suet. Gradually stir in enough milk to make a fairly stiff dough - be sure to add it very slowly or you might find the mixture has suddenly become saturated. If this does happen, mix in a little extra flour. Turn the pastry out onto a lightly floured board and knead for a couple of minutes, until smooth - you can treat this pastry more firmly than ones made with butter. Wrap in clingfilm and chill for about 30 minutes before use.
Cook the sliced potatoes in boiling salted water until tender, then drain and set aside. Melt the butter in a pan, add the onion and cook gently until softened. Stir in the apple and sugar and cook until the apple slices are tender but still hold their shape. They should just be starting to caramelize a little. Pour in the cider and simmer until almost completely evaporated. Stir in the mustard, season with a little black pepper and remove from the heat.
Slit the sausages open and peel off the skins. Mix the sausage meat with the potatoes, using your hands to break it up a little. Finally, stir in the warm onion and apple to give a loose mixture.
Heat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4. Roll out half the pastry on a lightly floured surface to about 5mm thick. Use to line a pie tin and then fill with the sausage and apple mixture. Brush the edge of the pastry with beaten egg. If you like, you can add the Cheddar at this stage, pushing it down into the filling to make cheesy pockets. Roll out the rest of the pastry to about 3mm thick and use to cover the pie, trimming off the excess and pressing the edges together to seal. Brush the top of the pie with beaten egg and then make a couple of holes in the centre to let out steam. Scatter the herbs over the top, plus a little grated cheese, if you like. Place in the oven and bake for 40—45 minutes, until the pastry is golden brown and the filling is cooked through — check by inserting a skewer in the centre; it should come out hot. Serve with a WI-competition-winning chutney.